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Teachers embrace cultural day

Daneka HillNorth West Telegraph
Principal Bill Mann stands before those involved with organising the cook out, (centre row) Jackie Hayter, Alana Lockyer and Chi Yenn See Tho
Camera IconPrincipal Bill Mann stands before those involved with organising the cook out, (centre row) Jackie Hayter, Alana Lockyer and Chi Yenn See Tho Credit: Daneka Hill

It was truly a cultural experience for the ages when Hedland Senior High School staff spent the day at Boodarie Station.

The event delivered on its promise of giving staff a country experience when the bus busted a hose on the rough drive out and a camel escaped its yard and chased teachers across the homestead grounds.

The female camel responsible for chasing the teachers around the yard looks on from her pen
Camera IconThe female camel responsible for chasing the teachers around the yard looks on from her pen Credit: Daneka Hill

Organised to help school staff better connect with their indigenous students, who make up one third of the group, the cultural day proceeded under the watchful eye of indigenous co-workers and local Aboriginal elders.

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Aboriginal and Islander education officer Alana Lockyer said teachers had asked for a cultural experience and “that’s what they got”.

“Some of our young teachers have never even seen this in their life,” she said.

HSHS principal Bill Mann said it was important to teachers they understood their pupils as much as possible.

“We get to actually, all of us, experience not just by looking at the cultural but by participating,” he said. “If you can imagine next week at school if one of our teachers says ‘oh by the way I had a kangaroo tail cooked on a hot fire, it was fantastic’, ‘yeah I do that all the time’, the kids will say.”

Alongside preparing and cooking 50kg of kangaroo tail staff also got to pick the local Elders’ brains about the best way to deal with their students.

Cultural awareness days in the past have consisted of visits to communities and workshops at the school, making the camping experience on Friday a first of its kind.

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